October , 2018

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NEW ORLEANSDeclaring that America has lost its “moral purpose,” entertainer and civil rights pioneer, Harry Belafonte, yesterday called on the nation to embrace healing as a way to end racial strife and unify behind a movement to bring racial equity to communities.

He said that racial healing “is the crux and the heart of what this country needs, and if we can’t heal ourselves…then all else will fail.”

“We are on the threshold of imploding,” Belafonte told an audience of several hundred scholars, community leaders and social justice advocates attending the W.K. Kellogg Foundation’s 2012America Healinggranteeconference in New Orleans this week.”If we cannot bring our citizens together, if we cannot heal, if we cannot show how to be the moral compass for what a democratic and a healthy society should do, I doubt if there’s going to be a replication or a new moment that will have had the opportunity that this one had, and we failed.”

Belafonte took the stage with long-time friend, Harvard Law Professor Charles Ogletree, after the screening of Sing Your Song, an extraordinary documentary on Belafonte’s remarkable life by filmmaker Susanne Rostock. Ogletree asked Belafonte about what kept him motivated in life, the importance of paying attention to what young people are doing, the obstacles he faced as a black entertainer in a racially divided nation and his work in the civil rights movement. But much of Belafonte’s focus was on the need for healing in America.

“We have to perpetuate healing,” he said. “…real healing is more than blacks and browns coming together; there is a huge part of this equation that says white America has really got to get its act together, too.”

Belafonte also cited the Kellogg Foundation, which two years ago launched its America Healing initiative to fund organizations across the country that are engaged in healing in their communities and are addressing structural bias.

“I applaud Kellogg (Foundation)…. Let’s call upon the global resources…you are on the right track…as you heal, you find new truths, new joys, new revelations.”

Belafonte also highlighted the importance of this non-violent approach to America Healing. “And let us embrace the fact that it comes to us this way, and let’s service it and take it to a better platform, to a better moment.”

And he warned that greed and the loss of a moral platform will be detrimental to the future of our society.

Belafonte also reflected on his life from growing up poor, standing with Martin Luther King Jr., to providing resources to the Civil Rights movement with violence erupting in the South. He recalled that friends had thanked him for his sacrifices over the years so that others could have a better life. But Belafonte insisted that he viewed his work as “a gift” and was humbled to be part of the mission.

“I have been so rewarded by the journey,” he said.

For more information about America Healing, visit www.AmericaHealing.org.

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Welcome to CopyLine Magazine! The first issue of CopyLine Magazine was published in November, 1990, by Editor & Publisher Juanita Bratcher. CopyLine’s main focus is on the political arena – to inform our readers and analyze many of the pressing issues of the day - controversial or otherwise. Our objectives are clear – to keep you abreast of political happenings and maneuvering in the political arena, by reporting and providing provocative commentaries on various issues. For more about CopyLine Magazine, CopyLine Blog, and CopyLine Television/Video, please visit juanitabratcher.com, copylinemagazine.com, and oneononetelevision.com. Bratcher has been a News/Reporter, Author, Publisher, and Journalist for 33 years. She is the author of six books, including “Harold: The Making of a Big City Mayor” (Harold Washington), Chicago’s first African-American mayor; and “Beyond the Boardroom: Empowering a New Generation of Leaders,” about John Herman Stroger, Jr., the first African-American elected President of the Cook County Board. Bratcher is also a Poet/Songwriter, with 17 records – produced by HillTop Records of Hollywood, California. Juanita Bratcher Publisher

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